Douglas Simkins

Funeral services for Douglas Simkins were held on Saturday, December 31, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. at the Witten Baptist Church in Witten with Justin Day and Casey Bridgman officiating. Music was provided by Sandy Kreeber, Luke Kastens, Geoff Smith, Casey Bridgman and Maurice Gustafson with Barb Chauncey, pianist. Vicki Hubner and Evelyn Farley were in charge of registration. Ruth Krogh, Char Deaver and Barb Hespe were flower attendants. Casket bearers were Cody Amidon, Kevin Curtis, Brian Horstman, Tauren Kastens, Brad Vogt and Ryan Vogt. Honorary pallbearers were his Witten and Winner classmates. Interment was in the Winner City Cemetery in Winner with military honors conferred by the Winner American Legion, Winner VFW and the Marine Corp Honors Program. Kotrba-Smith Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements. Douglas R. Simkins was born October 25, 1952 to Ervin “Hun” Eli Simkins and Arvis Echo Nyberg Simkins. The family lived near Mission in Doug’s early years. He was baptized in the Mission Lutheran Church. Doug enjoyed observing and learning new things. He always loved nature and felt most at home in the country. Doug was voted class president his junior year of high school in Witten. He had hoped to graduate from Witten but the high school closed in the spring of 1969. Doug graduated from Winner High School in 1970. Doug attended Mitchell VoTech, then enlisted in the United States Marine Corp. One of his ocean deployments was Display Determination. Among others, he was on the ship U.S. Inchon. Doug was a head cook who organized many cooks under him. When he spoke of his travels, he told of the beautiful colored water off the Island of Cyprus, and of visiting Valencia, Italy, and Barcelona, Spain. He attained the rank of Sargent E-5. He was awarded several medals: National Defense Service Medal, two Good Conduct Medals, and Letter of Appreciation. Doug married Cheryl Ulmer. He adopted her son Brent, and they had two more children, Barry and Billy Jo. He enjoyed taking his sons hunting. During this time, Doug built and designed his barn and built the home, all while working full time. In the mid 1980’s Doug and Cheryl divorced. Doug worked as a mechanic and welder on large farm equipment. He designed and built many trailers, fixed up antique tractors and was well known for his ability to fix up the old square-bale balers. He was an avid reader, and especially enjoyed learning about the Civil War and WWII. In 1995, Doug married Lynne Lenker Hallberg. They were married in Roger and Dawn Bridgman’s back yard in Utah. Doug celebrated sixteen years of sobriety on November 25, 2016. Doug was a member of the Witten Baptist Church and was on the deacon board. Doug was a lifetime member of the Winner American Legion. Doug passed away on December 27, 2016 at the Avera McKennan ICU in Sioux Falls. Doug was preceded in death by his parents, grandparents, and infant brother, Alfred. Doug is survived by his wife, Lynne; sons: Brent Simkins, Barry Simkins of Springfield, and Bill Simkins of Freeman; stepdaughters Heather (Brian) Karstens of Sioux Falls, and Hallie (Steve) Russell of Las Vegas, NV; his grandchildren; step-grandchildren; brother Eugene (Carol) and family; father and mother-in-law Dave and Pat Lenker; brother-in-law Ken (Cindy) Lenker of Lincoln, NE and sister-in-law Karla Lenker of Muskegon, MI; nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

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